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January 1, 2015

Peter Chalcraft - Vail WilliamsPeter Chalcraft, Partner

In the field of surveying, perhaps more so than most other professions we often find ourselves working in a team to some degree or another, but what makes for a successful team ?

Property Asset Management comprises of three very different but interdependent skill sets, Facility Managers, Account Managers and Management Surveyors and is therefore the perfect case study to examine the importance of team work and why personal interests and working together can be one and the same.

It is often said there is no "I" in team, this couldn't be further from the truth, a team is made up of individuals, the skill is to harness all those unique abilities with a clear common purpose; to do this we need to recognise what they are so roles can be assigned with clarity and cohesion This has never been more pertinent than in asset management.

To move forward we must be creative, be prepared to redeploy into the future in the knowledge that this will not always be embraced with other members of the team. So we must ask ourselves what do we personally contribute to the team. Friction is as important as harmony, a belonging and trust doesn't always mean friendship - history is full of examples, De Klerk and Mandela, Paisley and Adams.

There has to be a purpose, inevitably it will be to execute a strategy for a common goal, hopefully one that has been agreed between the management surveyor and the client. We need to communicate this knowledge which must be aligned with the core skills of the team. A goal is not a strategy; the success of a team will depend upon the vision it has agreed to follow and purpose to deliver what it believes is asked of them.

It is crucial that the account managers are both integrated into the team and know it. At Vail Williams we try and make sure that the account managers have atleast one day a quarter on site with either the facility managers or the surveyors to give them an opportunity to meet the tenants and the clients.

The adopted strategy will dictate the team, for example an A&E team in a Hospital needs to be able to react to the unknown, their ability to succeed will have lifesaving consequences similarly a Formula 1 team is broken down into a multiple of interdependent roles requiring an immense speed for execution.

A successful team leader has to be mindful of the business psychology of his/her team, there will be a need to understand and control emotions to enable the team to work in harmony . There has to be an individual commitment to succeed, each team member must enjoy the challenge of success and work with passion, enthusiasm and motivation. No matter what surveying discipline the team practise, if they feel valued, they will give more.

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